Dear reader of the blog. Thank you for visiting me… this is a bit of professional bias due to the work I’m doing, support by email to online poker players: thank you for contacting us, and they: sooon of bitcheeees those whores of your motherssss you must all die with a testicle cancer and so on… but we keep stay impassible and, overflowing with professionalism, continue undeterred: dear customer, our shuffle is completely random and so on, because these kind customers or doesn’t know how to play, or, even worse, they know how to play but haven’t still figured out the blatant obviousness of the fact that poker is basically, essentially, metaphysically, a game of luck.

Ah, and others: uhhhh but yesterday I had a lot of money and this morning they disappeared!! Well, actually that was me, I found my own emails that I sent when I was on the other side of the fence and sometimes, maybe because playing drunk, the next morning I didn’t remember of having lost everything and was accusing my future upright company. It was not many months ago, but how naive I was, if I think about it now. But enough now about poker, let’s talk instead of Malta where I live since almost one year.

Malta, as you can see on the map, is an island in the middle of the Mediterranean. And already from this you can spot the different attitude of who emigrated here: the young whimper that they feel isolated from the rest of the world, that in London there is the concert of I don’t know who, that in Ko Phan Ghan there is the full moon party and similar frivolous amenities. On the contrary, people like me that has, let’s say, reached a level of quiet wisdom that freed him to be a slave to external stimuli, as well as having personally verified that the world at the end it is not so much karasciù, well such a wise man does not complain about being in a place where there is almost always sun and sea sea sea all around and actually sees this as a sort of aristocratic isolation from a world that does not deserve him and never deserved.

And anyway, it’s not so isolated. Every year is visited by over a million tourists and many companies, especially indeed of online betting, came here bringing thousands of workers, mostly European.
Maybe this association island-isolation is more a kind of psychological legacy because nowadays, for distances greater than a few hundred km people take anyway the plane and Malta is well connected.


The “three cities” views from Valletta: Bormla, Birgu and Senglea. The one in the center, Birgu, is also called “Vittoriosa” (Victorious) because it was the capital during the famous siege of 1565 when Malta incredibly (miraculously for other versions) managed to resist to Turkish army.


Valletta seen from Senglea (also known as Isla). At the time of the siege, Valletta was not fortified as it is today and it was soon half occupied by the Turkish Army. It resisted for over a month the tip, on the right in the photo, Fort St.Elmo.


The Co-Cathedral of St. John, founded by the religious-military order of the Knights of St. John, born around 1100 in Jerusalem to help pilgrims in the Holy Land. After the conquest of Jerusalem by the Turks, the Knights ended up in Cyprus, Rhodes, and finally in 1530 in Malta, offered him by Charles V. They were driven out by Napoleon in 1798 at the beginning of his Egyptian campaign (two years after Malta came under British rule, until the independence in 1964).
The cathedral was initially austere and bare, as it is still now outside. But soon the knights began to compete with each other and with other churches in embellishing it, and today is one of the most richly decorated churches in the world. In particular, the floor is formed by the marble decorated tombs of the knights, each one a masterpiece. The most important masterpiece, however, is a painting done by Caravaggio during his stay in Malta, representing the beheading of St. John.


The predominant subject of the tombs is of course the Grim Reaper, the Death, that here tells us: “Venit hora eius, veniet et tua” – It came the time for him, it will come also your. No, it is totally useless to make superstitious gestures. Indeed, this is basically your only certainty. Think about it. It will come also your. No no, it’s useless…


A street in Valletta, with typical wooden colored balconies.


Valletta view from Sliema. Sliema is the economic center of Malta. The whole area around Sliema is an unique conglomeration formed by several cities that are actually so attached each other to appear as districts of one large single city.


The end of a beautiful promenade that, starting from Sliema and following some bays of the residential area of San Julian, arrives to Paceville, the nightlife area.


The archipelago of Malta is made ​​up of 3 main islands: Malta, Gozo and Comino. Comino is a small island between the other two, with a bay called Blue Lagoon where there is a sea that seems Caribbean.


Tourists in a cave.


Street in Gozo, the second largest island.


The fortified citadel of Gozo.


Inside the citadel.


The so-called “Azure Window” in Gozo.




A narrow street of the old capital, Mdina. It is located on the top of a hill, in the middle of Malta, as far as possible from the coast, then the safest place from the attacks by sea over the centuries. The first traces of settlement date back to 4000 BC. It was fortified during the occupation of the Saracens (in the Islamic world “medina” is the old part of the city). Today has mostly kept the character of a medieval citadel, formed by small streets inside large defensive walls.


Done with the “panorama” feature of the mobile. It is between Ghan Tuffielha Bay and Golden Bay, in the north-west. On the right, one of the many watchtowers scattered all along the coast of the island.


The beach on the left of Ghan Tuffielha Bay and Golden Bay.


From my little balcony, in San Paul Bay, so named because it is said that St. Paul, in his journey to Rome, shipwrecked on that little island on the right and was forced to remain in Malta for a few months. Miraaaacleeeee!!!


Shortly after my arrival, last October. Actually it is a slightly vulgar Italian gesture. It was dedicated in particular to a group of senior colleagues in Cork, sad Ireland, from where I was coming and with who I hadn’t gone very well as they were a bit… as to say… a bit… ok… practically a bunch of assholes, and let’s finish with this mania of the political correctness!


Dubai and Indonesia

Hello English-speaking friends! After about one year and a half I’m back with a new post! A long and thoughtful silence due to the camera that was broken, and, above all, to the fact that I didn’t feel much desire to write. Anyway there was not much to tell, no real exciting journeys, just an emigrant wandering between London, Malaga, then in a ugly Irish city called Cork and finally in the beautiful Malta where I am now. But I’ll tell you about this next time, this time I’ll tell you a short trip to Indonesia done last month.


I travelled with an old friend, Tiziano, and before Indonesia we stopped a couple of days in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. A strange city, full of spectacular skyscrapers, many of which probably empty. From what I understand, rather than oil, trade and tourism, it’s a financial center that recycles a lot of money and many of these are reinvested in constructions.


Here we are in the marina area, on the Persian Gulf. Most of the skyscrapers are truly beautiful and my favorite is the twisted one! Really brilliant. They were almost all built just in the last 20 years. In this sense, it reminds me Shanghai.


And behind a grill: the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa, 829 meters high.


Here, instead, we are in the larger mall in the world, the Dubai Mall, which has inside a giant aquarium. Dubai is full of shopping centers, where residents spend much of their free time. In short, a place quite alienating.


And here we are in Indonesia, in Jakarta. To visit all Indonesia would take months, being an archipelago of over 17,000 islands, each with its own history, until a recent somewhat artificial unification under one flag. So I’ll tell you just what I saw in my two weeks. Jakarta is ugly and among other things it’s practically impossible to visit because of the traffic, maybe the slowest in the world. After almost an hour in a taxi making just a few hundred meters, we gave up and went back to the hotel.


Chess players in Kuta beach, Bali.
At beginning I had planned to visit Yogyakarta after Jakarta to visit the Buddhist temple of Borobudur. But it happened that the Indonesian archipelago seethed with emotion at the news of the arrival of your favorite photographer and writer: the same day I bought the ticket exploded a volcano in the island of Sumatra, in the north-west. A total mess. The day I took the plane, instead, exploded a volcano in Java, where I was going, completely covering of ash that temple, which fortunately was reopened just right before my return.
So I finished first in Bali, that I had already visited many many years ago, back in 1996 during a long trip that also included Australia and South-East Asia. When I was young and full of hope… ehhhhh yes I am a bit ‘on the melancholy these days. I think it’s the job that is killing me! I do online support by email to poker players. A mass of lunatics, I’ll tell you next time.


Bali is a sort of Hindu stronghold, while the rest of Indonesia is overwhelmingly Muslim. There are also, in minority, Christians and other religions. Hinduism has absorbed elements from previous animist religions, making it in some sense unique.


Kids in a judo school.


Football match in Kuta, at sunset.


Cat at sunset. Actually Kuta beach is not beautiful, apart from the incredible red sunsets, spectacular and different every night. Even the Balinese come every evening on the beach to contemplate.


One of the three Gili islands, which are between Bali and Lombok. Very small, with a fabulous sea. There are no cars and motorbikes, just bicycles and taxi-horse carriages. The classic place to stay for a few days lounging lazily in the sea regardless of the evils of the world.


Children fishermen.


A food stall.


On a boat, going to snorkeling. There is a beautiful coral reef with lots of fish and sea turtles.


Family on a scooter in Yogyakarta, in Java island. Unlike Jakarta it has retained many of the cultural and artistic traditions of Java, of which is in a sense the soul. It was the city symbol of resistance to colonialism, especially against Dutch, and it’s currently the only province in Indonesia yet ruled by a sultan.




The gong of the shadows’ theater , located on the right side of the photo from the back. There is a lamp that casts the shadows of the puppets behind the screen.


My friend Tiziano on a rickshaw. We travelled togheter many times, including the first time in Bali.


Street sellers.


At dawn, in the mist, the Buddhist temple of Borobudur appears in the forest.


It was built around 800 A.D. and consists of 10 levels that symbolize a gradual ascent to nirvana. All around is adorned with bas-reliefs whose images depict the life of Buddha and other Buddhist teachings. At higher levels there are dozens of niches with statues of Buddha inside. Seen from above takes the form of a mandala.


Going up, I reached the last level and with it, finally, the enlightenment! I wrote it already on facebook with a photo that got 101 “like”, referring to the 101 Zen stories – but now don’t put the 102nd like, please. But, as I said, don’t be afraid, I will not abandon you to your fate disappearing in the nirvana. I’ll keep instead staying with you, as a bodhisattva, helping also you in reaching the enlightenment. Yes, I see it very hard. But never say never!





Around Yogyakarta there are also some beautiful Hindu temples. The main complex is called Prambanan, but also all around, in the countryside, you will come across scattered temples, like this.


Back to Jakarta. This time since we arrived on Sunday, the traffic was relatively less slow and we could visit it a bit. Here we are in one of the main squares, Kota, where there was the Dutch government building. It’s very alive on Sunday evening.




And there I’m, during a short course in Indonesian cuisine. Better the Italian, I have to say. Recently I’m imporving in cooking, I’ve always done it, as pasta and thigs like that, but now I’m learning also more complex dishes such “parmigiana”, “focaccia” etc… so adding this to other skills of mine, not least the amateur ones, and taking into account that now I have also a discreet income, I can rightfully call myself a great catch! A great catch. I do not say an eligible bachelor because it carries an infinite bad luck.

In the meantime, a photo of mine has been selected by National Geographic as photo of the week!

Thanks, thanks.

See you then… in a year and a half more or less.